Rising Pune Supergiant, after substantial changes is ready for its first IPL campaign of the season. MS Dhoni sidelined from being captain, is on a strong form ahead of the season. Steven Smith, the new skipper of the team is himself through his best stretches with the bat. The team has other forerunners as well, experienced as captains like Faf de Plessis and Ajinkya Rahane. The only potential slog in the team would be the absence of Ravichandran Ashwin, who rested for the match due to injury. However, the absence is contained with Imran Tahir, the top ODI and T20 bowler in the current list. Thus, the team is strong on batting side and heavy on bowling side as well.
Mumbai Indians will take on the challenge under Mahela Jayawardene. The batting line up is dependent on the top shots like Rohit Sharma, Jos Buttler and Keiron Pollard. The addition of Mayank Agarwal into the lineup is a strong boost into the team. In bowling, Tim Southee and Jasprit Bumrah are going to deliver a good line of attack. Lasith Malinga would be absent as he is most likely to join the team on April 7. Ben Stokes would bowl to Jos Buttler in T20 for the first time in the match. On the other hand, Krunal Pandya is with a strike rate of 191.12 in the last IPL season to become the top striker facing at least 50 balls.
The pitch in Pune has been favorable to chasers in the second inning so far, the chasing team has won five out of eight games so far. Mumbai Indians have a bleak record in the stadium so far. They have the second worst run rate at the stadium across three matches, which is 6.92. It would be interesting to how the team would play up to the likes of Steve Smith, du Plessis, and Imran Tahir.
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